A unique ensemble comprising a mint copy of Barbier’s early masterpiece, trial proof prints and original zinc printing plates.
‘The cover design pays homage to Beardsley […] and its 12 pochoir plates depict Karsavina in her principal parts. That their purpose is again to stir the emotion and delight the eye of the viewer, not to document the performance, is demonstrated by “Le spectre de la rose,” glimpsed at the moment when the phantom lover, of whom the young girl has dreamed after the ball, is about to disappear as the rose drops from her hand.’ (Ray).
The present copy comes with four loose black and white trial proofs that correspond to plates 1, 7, 11 and 12 in the book. Very unusually, the proofs incorporate embossed elements, which do not appear in the final version of the plates. Having experimented with the idea, the publisher opted in the end for flat printing, either to avoid high costs or possibly because the technique did not work well with pochoir colouring.
The three original printing plates offered here were used for illustrations 2, 7 and 10 in the book. Together with the trial proofs they give a clear picture of the full complexity of the process of conceiving and producing a high quality illustrated work.
First edition. Folio (33.5 x 27.5 cm). No. 276 of 500 copies (plus 12 on japon) printed on papier Vélin d’Arches, initialled by the publisher. Title with pictorial vignette to head and verso, 18 pp., 12 full-page coloured illustrations on rectos only, printer’s leaf at end. Original pictorial wrappers. 4 proof plates in black and white (loose) and 3 original zinc printing plates.
Ray, Art Deco, p.31; Theatrical Costume, Masks, Make-Up and Wigs: A Bibliography and Iconography, 2800.
Stock ID: 95414